- Associated Press - Wednesday, October 5, 2016

PHILADELPHIA (AP) - The state-run panel that has overseen the Philadelphia school district for 15 years is getting an overhaul, as its chair and longest-tenured commissioner are resigning.

The School Reform Commission’s chairwoman Marjorie Neff and commissioner Feather Houstoun gave notice Wednesday that they plan to step down. Neff’s last day is Nov. 3; Houstoun’s is Oct. 14. Terms for both were to expire in January.

Mayor Jim Kenney says he’ll make an appointment in coming weeks to replace Neff.

Philadelphia City Council President Darrell Clarke says the resignations are an opportunity to restart a conversation about how to help the state’s largest public school district make progress.

The state took over the district in 2001, citing persistent financial problems and academic woes.

Some lawmakers have called for abolishing the panel in favor of a local school board.

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